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Designing for the Web ~ Typography

Leading Leading, or line—height, is the distance between lines of text. The term comes from a time when blocks of letters were spaced by adding lead strips. The more strips that were added, the more the leading. For most applications, you should add a little more leading than you think necessary. For 9pt type, I always set my leading at 13pt, which is right at the supposed tolerance level for legibility. Type can be aligned to the leading values in a document — this is called a ‘baseline grid’ as shown below.

The big pink bus, was big, pink and most importantly, a bus.

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Leading can also have fractional values of this baseline grid, which is called ‘incremental leading’. For example, if a document has type set 9pt on 13pt, the baseline grid is 13pt. If there is a caption, where the type is smaller than the main body — say 7pt — then it would be odd if this was aligned to the main baseline grid because the leading would be too great. With Incremental leading, the leading of the caption has a fraction of the baseline grid value. As shown on the diagram below, the caption type (a) aligns with every fifth line of the main body of text (b). The result is a relationship between the two, that if an arbitrary leading were chosen, wouldn’t exist previously.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Vestibulum mattis nisi nec leo. b

a

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Vestibulum mattis nisi nec

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Five simple steps designing for the web  

Designing for the web

Five simple steps designing for the web  

Designing for the web

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